It’s going to be a very long time before anyone confuses beer taps with health supplement bottles, but it “beers” (bears) repeating that the old ad line, “Guinness is good for you” might not have been all wrong. Indeed, good old Homer Simpson-beloved beer appears to have a number of health pluses. That is, of course, with the very
crucial proviso that you consume the appropriate portions and don’t down it with mass quantities of pork rinds and potato chips.
Yes, red wine got a gigantic amount of good press via the “French paradox” some years back, and many, especially winemakers, argue that it’s the healthiest form of alcohol because of its high number of antioxidants. The fact of the matter, however, is that study after study shows that regular, moderate alcohol consumption in almost any format — merlot, martini, or Molson — has many of the same positive impacts. These range from improving heart health and cholesterol to even possibly aiding in the prevention of dementia in the elderly.
Still, because alcoholic beverages are made from varying ingredients, we were wondering about what nutrients might flow from beer taps as opposed to wine or whiskey bottles. It’s hard not to imagine that the beverages which happen to deliver the most non-alcohol nutrients might be the healthiest. Here are some of the nutrients found in regular and premium beers, in alphabetical order:
It’s hard to imagine that it’s not slightly good to be getting most of these nutrients, which might not always be found in a glass of chianti or a shot of tequila. Even so, we have no doubt that people will be arguing for decades about which booze contains the most health benefits when consumed in small to moderate regular doses.
It’s interesting to remember that beer, unlike nearly all other forms of alcohol, really was once considered a form of nutrition. It’s true that the breakfast beer drunk in the distant past is not something we’d recognize if it ever flowed from contemporary beer taps, but there is some truth to the bartender’s cliche that “beer is bread.”
Come to think of it, few foods are healthier than a slice of 100% whole wheat bread. Perhaps a whole grain beer might have at least some of the same benefits.
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